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Changing direction!

Project FlaMINGo So the door to adopt from Kenya is closed.

Thanksgiving Day 2014 the President announces a moratorium on all international adoptions. Wow.

Just like that.

Amazing, isn’t it? How life just suddenly changes, stops, or surprises us…

Our adoption application to the National Adoption Committee was “next” so we were standing just outside the door.

So after some time (not much) and hopefully a bit of perspective, we decided to NOT give up… Not yet.

The adoption game is not over. We have until November 2015 to get a “referral” to adopt as Swedes. So we have decided to stay on our journey and not stop until our time is up.

However, we are changing our destination.

Next stop – China!

First, we fly back to Costa Rica for a bit more relaxation as our paperwork is processed for adoption from China. I need to surf a bit more and just escape.

Wish us luck. We need it.

Meanwhile, we begin this next chapter in life. Our family is now starting Project FlaMINGo.

Curious?

We’ll keep you posted.

Hejdå Kenya!

Nín hǎo China!

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Next stop Kenya…

ElephantThe NAC in Kenya has set forth new “rules” / guidelines for processing adoption applications such as ours. Online people are talking about Kenya adoption rejections, a long wait time, and fear that it could be worse. It can be worrisome. So today we spoke with our representative to get some firsthand information regarding US and what is happening now. I can say that I feel better.

I am not a fan of relativity with regards to emotions. I would rather say that I feel confident or good, but for now I feel better. Could be nerves in general here…

Anyhow, for all those other families who are waiting just like us, here’s the scoop!

The new committee is meeting once a month. They are working to catch up and she believes that they are sorting through papers in some sort of chronological order.

There was one family rejected within LAN. They did not receive a reason why. Therefore, LAN is in communication with NAC to receive additional information. To receive a rejection without an explanation is not acceptable. They will try to resolve this asap.

The new guidelines are being implemented. However, this month there will be a meeting with LAN and NAC to discuss when they can implement such changes. The families that submitted their dossiers prior to the new committee were in compliance with the active rules/regulations. Thus, LAN’s goal is that a deadline be determined. It is vital for LAN to be able to maintain professionalism with the families they represent. This will be the objective of their next meeting.

LAN will also emphasize the impact such delays have on the children waiting within the orphanages. Again, the emphasis as always will be the chidren. It is important that decisions and actions be made that focus on the best interests of the children – first and foremost. (When I hear this, I always feel more confident with the organization. Yes, as waiting families we can be frustrated. However, as long as the children are best being served, we can remain a bit frustrated.)

It is not common that the entire NAC committee is replaced. Most times there are board members who remain and assist with the transition. This predicament is new and is a result of the election and new governing power. The theory is to avoid any corrupt members remaining. (I have no knowledge of this being an issue but it could be. Who knows…)

Yes, there is a meeting in Stockholm for the European adoption organizations. There are families who have adopted from Kenya being invited in to share their experience. We were advised that it is not a public gathering for families waiting to adopt.

As for us, they are expecting our papers. They will hold our dossier until the infertility certificate and new passport copies arrive. (We hope to pick up these copies with stamps from Notary Public, Foreign Ministry and Kenyan Embassy stamps on Friday.) They will then collate them and submit in May’s meeting to NAC. They stated that they hope our file will come forward in June or July. I think this sounds WAYYYYYYYYYYY too optimistic but it was good to hear anyhow.

We were told that we can go ahead with our plans to move to Nairobi in August. That LAN will meet us and assist with housing regardless if we have received our papers for an adoption. They will still need to approve our home and such so we will simply go forward as planned.

Lastly, Barnens Vänner have not had any rejections as of yet. (AND let’s hope it stays that way forever!) They feel quite confident that LAN is very good at identifying any concerns with paperwork before submitting it to NAC. So…let’s just hope that stays the same for now and the future.

Overall, there wasn’t a huge change in information. However, it always feels best to get the information as directly as possible. Too much chatter on the forums and groups online creates a lot of worry. (And I am sure that I will still watch for information like a hawk there!) But let’s hope that this whole back-up and delay is temporary. Let’s pray that NAC gets the support, strength and direction needed to resolve the problems so that more children can find a home.

We know how it is to lose a child. I hope that we will be able to help a child who is also overcoming such a loss… Together we will become family!

 

News from Kenya

DSCF0078

NEWS!?!?! Good, bad, what…???

Today we finally heard some “unofficial” news from Kenya regarding us and the ongoing process.

It’s not particularly uplifting so we will continue our application / search and hope for something good.

Our file will be sent to the NAC next month. With the current backlog, I doubt it will be reviewed so we will submit further documentation regarding infertility and our reasons for adopting since we already have one living biological child together and 3 bonus kids. We’ll also send information regarding Kasper’s death due to medical negligence and hope that we get a bit of sympathy.

Anyhow, we just got this information from the Swedish Friends of Children regarding the NEW “rules” of NAC:

Update from the visit to Kenya
NAC is composed of ten members, including doctors, lawyers, representative from the State Department, and representatives from NGOs. Common to all members of the Committee, they have experience working with children.

Every third year members in the NAC are replaced. Autumn 2013 were all members exchanged as a result of new government. The new committee is in a learning process, it takes time before they have found their approach.

We have received indications regarding the following, however, we have no official communication from the Authority to us or our partner organizations directly :

– NAC meets once a month, as previously
– Max 10 applications for inter-country adoption is approved per meeting
– Childless couples have priority
– NO to adopt a third child
– Infertility certificates shall be included in the dossier . The reason for adoption must be clear. NAC wants to understand why you want to adopt a child from Kenya, and if one can smoothly get biological children, they are not a priority.
– An update to the consent investigation (home study) is required if the investigation is over a year old when the file is sent to Kenya

Waiting times at the NAC
With the current situation it is very difficult to know how long our applicants must wait before NAC can get an answer. NAC has many applications waiting for answers and they have not yet had time to go through all the applications received from October 2013 onwards.

Our partner organizations will ask for a meeting with the NAC to get a clarification of the guidelines being implemented.

Applicants who have a priority of NAC may continue to send their documents to Kenya.

Non-priority applicants may contact their respective administrators for a discussion.

We can in the current situation not give any details for specific cases as we must await approval from the NAC .

Ups and downs while waiting…

Adoptees New Room Picture

We’re waiting for you…

We submitted our papers to Barnens Vänner (21 Feb) and they quickly sent it to Little Angels Network. It has officially been received in Kenya as of 28 February.  So now…we…WAIT.

There is no communication until there is a decision.

So…we…wait…

Today, I saw a horrible post on Facebook of a family who is adopting via DanAdopt who has been REJECTED. They have previously adopted from Ethiopia but have been rejected by the National Adoption Committee in Kenya. As of right now, they have no idea why. UGH!

Astrid has asked again and again, “But Mamma, what if they say no?” And I have responded, “If they say no, then I will just keep loving on you everyday. We will stay here with our friends and chosen family. We will be OK. If we get to adopt another kid, that is a bonus, but we are OK.”  So now…to let that sink in further and further…

Yes, I suppose we are ok without adopting. But I would really like a super, wonderful surprise. A bonus! A happier ending…

Life is not bad. Life is good. We have our family, our friends, our home and such. We have sooo much. We have also lost our son and our previous dreams of that family. Now, we are trying to simply cling to hope.  To happy surprises and days where we hear Astrid laughing with another.

Maybe we will get this. Maybe we won’t.

Of everything that has happened, I have learned that there are absolutely no guarantees. We simply do the best with what we have. What we have is amazing. My only hope is that we can share this with another child who also longs to be part of a family.

The journey continues…

Here’s a song that has come to mean so much to me over the past 3 years…    The Promise by Tracy Chapman

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